Three young women from Ballyclare will be making a difference in their community after joining Action for Change, the UK’s largest girl-led advocacy network set up by Girlguiding.
Rachael (16), Sarah (15) and Grace (15), all took part in a series of workshops at a two-day event held in Holywood from June 30 to July 1.
The sessions, co-produced by the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation and Girlguiding, provided the chance to develop the skills required to put a project together to really make an impact on the lives of girls and young women in their communities.
The attendees received expert advice from Victoria Kinkaid, The Reals People Project and Gary Hart, Senior Education and Engagement Officer at UK Parliament, who gave inspirational talks about their experiences and successes as change makers.
Rachael wants to encourage more girls to take STEM subjects at school and consider future careers in STEM. She said: “People tend to believe STEM is more for boys, I want to prove them wrong.”
Sarah and Grace want to reduce the amount of single use plastic being produced in their schools and local areas.
Sarah said: “I’m tired of seeing people throw plastic bottles into general waste bins, beaches being destroyed by plastic and the thought of there being more plastic than fish in the sea by 2050. More people need to be made aware of the situation and more recycling bins provided.”
Grace added: “I hate seeing our beautiful world being destroyed by plastic waste. I hope to persuade my school to introduce recycling bins for plastic and cardboard, local shops not to use plastic bags for loose fruit and my Guide unit to use reusable water bottles.”